Digital advertising in 2015: Why it’s changing and how it affects your business

By: Matthew Davis | mdavis@newzgroup.com

Digital advertising is a game-changer; yet, in the background of this transformative business is a $21.8 billion problem. Source This problem did not occur overnight, but it has gone largely unnoticed. So, what is this problem? You may be using it already. If not, you may start after reading this article.

The problem is called ad blocking.

Ad blocking is the act of using plugins (ex. Adblock Plus, uBlock) on your web browser to stop, replace or remove ads on a website. As many fads come and go in society, this trend is not slowing down. In fact, it’s growing in the United States and around the world. The most recent study from PageFair and Adobe shows a 48% growth of US ad block users in the past few months. Click here to see the report. The increase brings the total number of active ad block users to around 45 million Americans. This is the same size as the entire population of Texas and New York combined. Source

So, how do companies combat this trend?

While there can be several ways to deal with it, these are the most common ones.

  • The first method is for advertising companies to pay the ad blocking companies to ignore and display their ads. This has many groups calling foul, as this practice is forcing websites to either pay for having their ads ignored or lose out on money they receive from their readers clicking on the ads. Source
  • Another method comes from the web publishers themselves, who have asked their readers to turn off ad blockers on the website. Unfortunately, the success of this attempt can vary widely. Still, it never hurts to ask. Source
  • The last method focuses on using a different source that is not a website, instead it is either an app or e-edition of a magazine/newspaper. By asking folks to login or accept a service that is ignored by ad blockers, content creators can offer advertisers a valuable and unblocked option. This provides newspapers/publishers a compelling reason to give local advertisers an ad that is not blocked on other services online.

Moving forward, it is important to remember the flexibilities the internet provides. However the same flexibilities hold many rewards as well as problems. Be sure to continue reading our blog as we will discuss how newspapers and businesses can see eye to eye when it comes to digital advertising.